The Concilio, a Dallas nonprofit organization that focuses on advancing the lives and betterment of Latino families, hosted its 2022 Big Dreams Gala to celebrate its 40th anniversary.
The gala raised about $227,000 to benefit the nonprofit.
Whitney Strauss, The Concilio Board of Directors chair welcomed everyone at On the Levee and shared how the organization has impacted the Latino community.
“Our 40th anniversary on the first day of Hispanic Heritage Month is a perfect time to reflect on the many contributions of the Hispanic community,” Strauss said. “It’s worth recognizing, worth championing, and worth celebrating.”
Among The Concilio’s programs is its parental engagement program which connects families with information and resources so they can achieve their dreams.
Florencia Fortner, president and CEO of The Concilio, introduced a video of program graduates Claudia Juarez, who began as a housekeeper and now owns a staffing service. Juarez shared how the program equipped her to help her son pursue his dream of going to college.
Fortner also highlighted some of The Concilio’s last 40 years’ accomplishments, including eight parental engagement programs serving 85,000 families, ensuring 76,000 homes were counted in the Census, and providing community members with information regarding COVID-19 vaccines to serve 670,000 people. The organization also held its first annual Power of Latinos Summit, which brought together North Texas leaders to address challenges and opportunities of the Latino community.
Big Dreams co-chairs Monia Lira Bravo and Bridget Moreno Lopez expressed what The Concilio has meant to them.
“Monica and I are so proud to champion the mission of The Concilio. We all need a Concilio in our lives,” Lopez said. “We need an organization that believes in big dreams and provides an infrastructure and a pathway for Latino families to enjoy economic and quality of life success.”
The event closed with Ballet Folklorico dancers who danced under celebratory fireworks to commemorate the anniversary.
For more information about The Concilio and its programs, visit TheConcilio.org.